Friday, August 28, 2020

A Borrowed Alligator

The trash collection is coming this morning, and I've just been running around throwing a few dying plants into our garden waste bag. We're at that time of year when some of the annuals are already giving up the ghost. The cosmos on the front porch, the petunia in the hanging basket. I'm going to let the marigolds go a bit longer but they're looking a little peaked too, particularly with all the rain we've had lately. Marigolds are sun-lovers but rain makes the flowers rot.

I think we've finally got the library more or less whipped into shape -- the furniture placed for appropriate social distancing, with signs up saying DO NOT MOVE THE FURNITURE, and caution tape across the bookcases to drive home the point that people shouldn't browse for their own books. It's very bizarre to see a library where the books are marked off-limits, but for now, that's our reality. People have to tell us what they want and we collect it with our "clean, gloved hands." (As my boss has specified.)

So not only am I wearing a mask all day but also latex gloves, which are miserable -- sweaty and constricting. But I am not going to be a baby about it. I promise.

This little alligator-in-the-sewer image came from my computer at work. It was originally used in a New York Times story back in February, and I loved it so much that I copied it onto my desktop. I guess I have that uniquely Floridian tendency to see all representations of alligators as the community property of people from my state. Hopefully, rather than suing me for copyright infringement, the Times will realize that I'm posting it here out of admiration for their excellent, clever newspaper, and they'll appreciate the free advertising.

I had to back up all the useful files on my work computer because it's being wiped clean and updated. So Sewer Gator can live here now. Good riddance to most of the rest of the junk I had stored on that machine.

(Top photo: Spotted on a dog walk -- My Little Pony trapped in a fence!)


  1. Bad luck for boys in the library wanting to look up naughty words in the dictionary. Ah, they can find much worse on their phones now.
    I looked up to see who owns the New York Times and I am none the wiser really and so I take your opinion on board.

  2. My Little Pony trapped in a fence is a lot more creepy than a Florida alligator crawling out of a New York sewer.

  3. My little garden is fading as well, I think the winds earlier and then the intense heat made it go over earlier than usual.
    It makes you realise what a short growing season it is.
    Love the little alligator.

  4. I'm with Mitchell. That pony is creepy. I hate wearing gloves too. Good luck with work.

  5. Good luck with the new library operations...I can handle a mask, but don't envy the latex glove wearing all day long. Try sprinkling the inside of each glove with a little (talc/baby) powder before putting them on to help reduce the sweating.

    Your little peeking alligator reminds me of my 5 year old granddaughter...whenever I have to say goodbye to her, she yells out, "See you later, Alligator!" and waits for my reply, "In a while, Crocodile!" Silly fun.

  6. Wearing gloves all day has to be horrible. Did you ever think there would be a time when you would look back fondly on NOT HAVING TO WEAR MASKS AND GLOVES? No wonder they keep OR's so cold.
    And yes. Alligators are the animals of our people. The Florida People.

  7. I hope you get lots of breaks with safe places to go so you can remove that mask and those gloves for a while. Stay safe and take care there.

  8. ...and librarians can really get things whipped into shape. Interesting how books are obtained from the library.

  9. Oof - I would hate to wear gloves all day! Especially because they're just an extension of your actual hands, and so will acquire whatever germs your hands would. Seems like washing your hands regularly & using hand sanitizer would be just as effective, since once you've handled one book (or typed on your computer) you've "soiled" the gloves.

    We have DAYLILIES blooming right now. What the actual heck!

  10. I've often wondered why the gloves are so important. Once you touch something, the glove is contaminated. Then you just keep on touching things all day with those same gloves. ??? Like the cashier at the store. She wears gloves. She handles money. Then she touches all your purchases (groceries) and it keeps on going all day long. I imagine those gloves are a lot worse for us than her hands might be. Of course, that's just an opinion. You have a super weekend, hugs, Edna B.

  11. Interesting to hear how you are going to handle the books in the library. I hope that works. I'm having to get used to this whole "plan-ahead" type of living.
    Cute alligator!

  12. Gloves, they have determined , are useful only to prevent you from touching your face. Washed hands do a better job. So, yeah, ditch the gloves, they are contaminated, and just do not pick you nose. Easy!
    Love the maybe yes, um no, gator- look around, go back into the hole-easy to relate to this little gator.

  13. I love the alligator. Jim wears gloves to pump gas, to keep his hands separated from all of the other touches on the pump handle. Other than than, we don't. I am sorry you have to wear gloves all day, they really do such the life out of your skin. ;

  14. Dear Mr Reed,
    It has come to my notice that you have effectively stolen a piece of intellectual property belonging to "The New York Times" - namely an animated gif we put out earlier this year in the form of a moving sewer alligator. Our legal team have advised me to demand that you remove the alligator immediately from your sensationalist and morally questionable web-log (i.e. "Shadows and Light").
    Yours truly,
    Dean P. Baquet
    (Editor NYT)
    P.S. Didn't you used to work here? You may recall the elevator bellboy from those far off days. That was me!

  15. I totally get masks but I don’t get how gloves protect other people unless they’re changed all throughout the day. Don’t the same germs get on gloves that get on hands? I guess the gloves protect your hands though. I think you are a natural bibliophile and library work appeals to your sense of order.

  16. There's a child somewhere missing that My Little Pony toy. Hopefully that is the situation rather than some weird reason for the toy left lodged there.

    I cringed when I read about restricting access to the stacks, but I understand the need for safety. Does the ALA have any guidelines for dealing with Covid?

    You may have said before, but does Dave work at your school, too?

    Good luck as you go along this school year.